tv Meet the Press MSNBC January 15, 2012 11:00pm-12:00am PST
this sunday, mitt romney rollin new hampshire. >> we celebrate as we go back to work. >> now the stage is set for the showdo in soh carolina. >> those that are calling themselves true conservatives end up attacking a venture capitalism and capitalism in general and it's suggests a of desperate time for some campaigns. >> can roey be stopped? newt gingrich says yes, and i will ask him how when he jns me le this morning.
republicans have condemned romney's rivals for leading an assault on free enterpris and later perspective onat will drive the gop voter, and south carolina senator, lindsay graham, and congressman tim scott. also hear live this morning a ra conversation with senate majority leader, harry reid, the mocrat lader of nevada. is a new tone possible in t new year? can anythi get accomplished in theidst of the 2012 campaign? go morning. all the focus on south carolina, where gop voters will go to the polls next saturday. this weekend a group of
promine republican christian conservatives gave a boost to rick santorum, andhat was a last ditch effort to stop romney's march to the nomination. and what will it all mean? with us, former speak of the house, newt gingrich. speaker gingrich, welcome to "meethe press." >> good to be with you. >> you laid it out this week and you said there was one way to sp romney in south carolina. this is what you said to fox news. >> if we consolidate conservatives, we could beat romney by a big margin. >> we heard from social conservatives in texas, and they said let's get behind rick santorum. you feel pressure to consolidate behind rick santorum and get out of the race? >> that was highly exaggerated. we split that vote, and as of noon today, others who were there will be talking d they
will indicate i have strong support from christian conservatives and social conservatives and that support continues. there was an agreement, the one consensus was nobody was for mitt romney, but in fact there was a verystrong santorum group and a very strong gingrich group at that particul meeting and the ggrich folks are veryuch for me and they will start speaking at nootoday. >> if you look at the raw numbers and politics, there's not one alternative to mitt romney,here are several of you vying for that evaelical vote in south carolina, a we have seen this before, four years ago, and doesn't that help romney? >> sure it does help him. and the only way a massachusetts modere can get through south carolina is i the vte is slit, but weave six days t me our case to peop, and i think somebody whogenerallygree are the best debaters so far, and i think i have the best chance to beat obama and i have the best chance ge the past to change
washington, and i have the boldest and mt aggressive projs plan as wells a record of workingith reagan and with the speaker with bi clinton, and we wl make our case to the national security cservatives and social conservatives and economic conservatives that newt gingrich is the best candidate to defeat president oba. i think we're doing pretty darn well down here. >> your feelings despite what the social conservative group said over the weekend, ri santorum doesn't have more momentum here and he is not the obvious alternative choiceto romney? >> no, the fact is if you look at the actual vote yesterday that we were vy close in the vote, and that, in fat, the folks who will be speakin t starti at noon today, congreman watts and other they are dedicated to my candidacy and we will go into
the next campaign with a large momentum. the polls show consistently, i am the strongest rival to romney in south carolina, and i think that the debate tomoow night will be a very important part of that, and the debate thursday night will be a very important part of that. i think it's going to be a lively week. one of the most important weeks in the history of the gop because ihink nominatng somebo w is essentially a massachusetts moderate makes i much harder to defeat president obama, and nominating somebody who is a reagan conservative makes it easier to defeat president obama. >> this has been your charge, and you think about lively, and i think about the debate last sunday which was fairly lively between all of you, and this is the charges you made against romne let me play it. >> i think a bold reagan conservative with a very strong economic plan is a lot more likely to succeed in that campaign than a relatively timid massachusetts moderate. >> this is your flyer you are
circulating, and it says clearly romney is not electable. >> i think he will have a hard time getting elected. >> and these were some of the exit polling, 42% of consvatives voted for romney, and only 14% for you, and then how about this from the exit poll, among those tisfied or dissatisfied, 6 said they would be dissatisfi with you, and these are conservatives who are actually voting. how do yo respond to that? >> governor romney verned next door for four years, and bought a house in new hampshire, and lived in new hampshire for years. that was his third best stat in the country after utah and ssachusetts. it shouldn't be very surprising in his strong hold he didadequately,nd it was not overwhelming but adequate. when you think about -- >> wait a second. >> go ahead. > if this is a place where they
know him best, and he was a timid republican moderat governor, don't you know those in new hampshire would knothat best? >> when you come to south carolinand you learn, for example, he favoredun control and raised the tax on guns 400%, that has a real impact in s carolina, and that's a real contrast. think, agai when paul got exactly the same vote in new hampshire as romney did, it was considered a defeat, and you have to look at regional chair turistics. just ask yourself simple question. is it better to draw a bold, clear line between aeagan conseative and the most liberal president in our history, it better to have somebody in many way romney ce versus obama care, and tax increases in massachusetts, and
the 47th worst record in creating jobs in massachusetts, and it's harder for romney to draw a sharp contrast th it would be for me. >> let me ask y about your own candidacy. after the appearance when you criticized the medicare reform plan from ryan, it looked like you were over befo you started and then you came back and you said six weeks ago, you said odds are i will be the nominee and then you we down again. how do you explain the ups a downs in your campaign? >> well, i think -- in the summer i wa surprised the intensity of the washington establishment of the tax and the number of dfferent people who said gingrich is dead and gone, i calmly pt having positive eas as you know, and having positive ideas by early december, the gallop poll had me up by something like 12 o 15 ints over governor romney natalie, and then the romney campaign understood reality a they decided they would throw
$3.5 million in negative ads, and i thought it was bad for the country and a bad tactic, and as a result, we slid from a very strong first to coming in urth. we revaed the campaign and accepted the reality that you yun lat redisarm and get out of the race or have some ability to match thenegativy that governor romney's campaign engages in. ihink the result has been to really dramatically slow down his progress and have a lot of people raising questions about whether or not govern romney really coul withstand the campaign this fall and could stand up to barack obama in debates. >> let's talk about going negative. again, the debat on "meet the press" last sunday, you previewed what is a film against romy's times head of bain
capital, a firmunveiled by your suer pac,hich is run by a forr top advisero you, and this is how you previewed it sunday. >> i hope it'sccura when it comes out and i can say publicly that i hope the super pac runs an accurateovie about bain, and i hope it's to totally accurate and people can watch the 27 1/2 minutes of his career with bain and peoe can decide for themselv. if there was a topic sentence, i thin it would be this. >> a group of corporate raters, led byitt romney, andhe company was bain capital, and it was more ruthless than wall street. >> that's not accurate, is it? >> this is the difference between romney and me. when the "whiton post"aid
his ad was wrong, he didn't know anything about it, when it said somhing silar to the fil i promptly said hoped they wou make it accurate, and all of this is out in the open because you cannot communicate privately under the w, and i said that publicly, and as inderstand it, rick tyler has said he is preped to edit the film and submitted five questions to romney's campaign to get accuracy and clarity to edit the ilm. i think if we're goi thave these nd of super pacs, there should be some effort to make them accurate, and the tough ads should be factual. >> i think that's a question frankly they shod decide once they make it accurate. i would oose ibeing run i it's inaccurate.
i think that should be a reasonable standard. i wish gornor rmney would go by the same standard you know how hard it is and negative is it to have four mistakes in a 30-second commercial. >> it's easy after the cs out of the bag, and the commercl is ru and now it's easy to say i think they ought to edit those things out, and how do you unring the bell? you got the benefit of that, didn't you? >> i think the questions are being raised by a lot more folks than newt gingrich, and i think governor romneyught to answer the questions. you will notice, by the way, he has been saying he created 100,000 js in the private sector, and this week he got three pinocchios in the washington post, and now he is down to saying thousands of jobs, and not 100,000 jobs. this is sorting outf the ocess in a campaign, and i ve ted to be precise in descriptions abouthe
governor's record and my own record. i worked with reagan, and we helped to create 16 million n jobs, and i worked wi clinton in the house, and we created 12 million new jobs. those are verifiable by people. >> you talk about there should be more facts and records. there are questions about whether governor romney should releaseis tax records, and is thapart of what you would like see now? >> he has to makeis own decision. president obama is releasing his records this coming thursday, nd i will release my income tax records, and we agree this is partf the process of the american people having tst in the candidates. i think gernor romney, if he plans to stay in the race, ought to plan to release his records, because he will never get through the fall without releasing his records, and it's better to do it in the primary seon so theountry understands what is going on and not wait and be surprised in september. i thk it's the right thing to do, and we're going to work --
right now we have our fol working to relee our records on thursday so the amecan people can see them. >> do you thinkgovernor rney is hiding something? >> i don't know that. you are the reporter. i think the country deserves transparency, and these are big issues and not issues you can hide from. i will try to set the ample to provide leadershipo do he right thing,nd then goveor romney has to decide what he is going do. that's his decision, and i will let you determine why he makes that decision. >> going back to the film, it said bain capital was mor ruthless than wall street. let's be clear here. are you suggesting tat what bain did as venture capitalist on behalf of investors including funds for working people and firefighters and the like, was equivalent to what aig did in coming up with complex finaial instruments thated to financial collapse orsubprime
lenders, and areou suggesting that's the ae quif luns in how ruthless they were? >> somebody who was an investor and a deal maker says flatly he not deal withheorork with uld them. i recommend you read his article. i am not an expert in this kind of financial stuff,ut i do think if you are going to run for president, and if you are ing to base a lge part of your claim on your business experience, you have to he some expectations of people asking you to open up the books and prove it. you cat just run for president on claims. you have to have an actual experience. my life has been so much in the publicsector, and if i say i worked with ronald reagan to develop a jobs plan that's demonstrable. and if i say we worked with president clintonnd we had unemployment come down to 4.2% and balancedthe budget for four straight years, and that's out
in the open. governor romney should be held to the same test of bei out in e open. >> do you beeve governor omney is aood businessman and has been a good businessman, don't you? >> sure. i think he's a tough and smart businessman. and the question is what is his character and what w hi judgment? how does that relate to being president? are there legitimate questions that can be asd that ought to be answered by somebody who wants to be president. it's a question about how you approach people. how you approach circumstances, what values you bring to bear, and those are legitimate questions if all ofs are running for president and people should know it before they vote, because the presidency is such a central position in our society th you want to know what does ts person think, what are they doing, and what values do they those are totally legitimate questions.
>> the wall street journal, and others, they wrote this,he in capital bonfire, and it's a little more th rich people figuring out clef legal ways to loot acompany, and are you comfble, speaker gingrich, being casts as the michael moore of this republican primary? >> look, am totally committed to free terprise, and i am partilarly committed to small businses an intpreneurs, and startups, and i am committed to the people that workardto save mpanies. i used to be on an advisory board, and teddy went down and took over a compny and turned it aound and sad the jobs, and that was because those were his values, and that was his level of commitment to try and
makeure the company could succeed. im veryuch for capitalism and free enterprise, and i am for it as it relates to small businesses and main street, but to say that raising a question about a particular company and a particul style for somebody who wants to run for president suddenly gets turned into a class action isfoolishness. this is about one man that r for office on a commitment about his own career, and the minute you start to question that career, l of a sudden people throw up all the smokescreens. all he has to do is talk about his career, and this is aout somebody that wants to be president, and that's a matter of values, character and behavior. >> if you lose in south carolina, do you have to get out of the race? >> well, you certainly have to reassess it, but frankly i think we will win here and we are increasingly consolidatingnd i am excited about the next seven days, and we have stuff planned all over the ste and i thin it's going tbe a very, very exciting campaign.
>> i don't mean to dampen youou expectations, but if romney des win, is he the nominee? >>if romney wns here, he ha an enormous advantage going forward which is why i think it's imptant for ever conservative to wants to have a conseate nominee to rally around -- i am the one person who has a realistic chance of defeating him he, and they would reach the cclusion to vote for anybody but gingrich will help romney win south carolina. that's the heart of the message for the next six days. >> i have to ask something funny and ridiculous of politics. here is a portion a web ad you have against mitt romney. i will play portion. just like john kerry, he eaks frnch, too. this obsession with th french, speakerngrich. if mitt romney speaks french,
then voters in south carolina should conclude what? >> no. that whole ad wasesigned to take ducacus, barney frank, and john kerry and mitt romney and say, look, this is what massachusetts is like. mitt romney is governor, and governed like a massachutts politician he is closer to ducacus and kerry than ronald reagan, and frankly you just proved the point of putting that in,it was funny, and more people -- that web ad has gone viral because people think it's funny, an i rest the case as cainused to say, it's nice to have a sense of humor. >> just to be clear, somebody who lived two years in france as you did, you don't have a proem knowing and speaking french -- >> first of all, i lived in france as a child, and i did my
dissertatioin belgium, and i am happy to havepeoplepe many languages, when you look at the whole ad, it does work and comes together perfectly and ties romney back to ducacus and ker, and that's the whole point of the ad. >> speaker gingrich, good luck to the trail and we'll be watching you. >> thank you. coming up, six days before south carolina, i it the lt stand for republicans if they want to op romney from becoming the nominee. we will talk to tworepublicans, senator lindsay graham and congressman scott. will 2012 be any different? congressman scott. will 2012 be anythis isent? an rc robotic claw. my high school science teacher made me what i am today. our science teacher helped us build it.
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year, democrats and jobpproval of democrats may be more specific, and what can you as the majority leader or the president do to change that? >> first of all, i understa the frustration of the american people and i feel the wa but understand that we have ha obstructionism on steroids. the repulican leader, and m counterpart, mitch mcconnell. we spent months on thin that used happen matter factually. raising the debt ceiling. we did it for presidenteagan 18 times, and we spent 2 1/2 months doing that. so the nber one go -- i hope the republicans have learned a lesson as extendsing the payroll tax, and that was disaster for them. can yobelieve they were opposed to lowering taxes? so i would hope that they
understand that everything doesn't have to be afight. legislations are made tobe together and compromise, and i hope theea party doesn't have the influence, and it had been really bad for this country, and i understand why the american people feel the way they do. >> you thought the tea part would die out as the economy got better, and you were not ready about that? >> i think the tea party is dying outs the economy is getting betr slowly. >> you believe that. >> duri the past year, i would hope the two republican leaders have learned what took place i the previous year. you know, what we have to focus on this year is rebuilding the economy. we have to. the only way to do that is to eate jobs, and that's why the agenda that i moving forward on, i hope with cooperation from the republicans this time, it's to do something abou creating jobs. our suace transportation bill,
it will save jobs and create jobs and the federal aviation administration, thatill save job and it's importa to this network right here, and that's of course dealing with informational -- dealing with making sure we have property that is protected, and we need to do that, d that's job saving so that's what we ed to work on, things that create jobs and protect the american economy. >> o that point, bause it has been a big issue, because i am on facebook and twitter, and people say that's a bi that appears to be helpful bu could have anffect onlamping down with free exreshti on the internet. >> this bill was unanimous with democrats and republicans, and in recent weeks, organitions by google and facebook and others have said that there are problems this cod create, and i think th're right, it could create prle, and i have spoke to the chairman of the
coittee and wrote a letter to the ranking member, saying there' issues that have come up and i think we need to have this a winner for verybody, not just for the content people. i have spoken at length with senator feinstein, and she is in the eye of the storm in california, beuse that's where theft of music and movies is taking ac and also where google and facebook is headquartered. so we need twork on this, and i pe w can ve a manars amendment when w get back in a week o ten da, and it's important that we try to do th on a fair basis and i will do everything that i can to get thatdone. >> you mentioned sena mcconnell promising to make the president a one-term president, and i invoked your name to raise this question about how washgton works. this is the question that i posed to newt gingrich during the dete last week. >> speaker ggrich, if you become president gingrich and the leader o the democrats, harry reid, says he will promise
to make you a one-term president. how would you propose t work with sebody like that in order to achieve results in washington? >> i think every president that works th every leader of opposition kows they are working with somebody thatwants to make them a one-term president. >> you d the charge against president bush and you were pleased when his approval rightings were kocked down, and gang rich is saying th is how it's done in washington. >> can you be againstsobody being re-elected, but not as your number one goal. we have d obstructionism stroids. we need to work together, and tt's the name of the game here and it hasn't happened. the only way t get things ne is by cooperationand if we are going to rebuild america which is number one proam, we have to do that by creating jobs. >> who should have the most influence in this new year? 46%aid obama, and 42% said
republicans and congress, and this is after you and president obama had been out there campaigning saying it's all the republicans' fault, and theare standing in the way and it's tight between who should have most influce, the president or the republicans. >> we know we have anique form of government. a constitution which i think has been the most defining document in the history of the world for having good government. we have three separate equ branches of government, and the only way you get things done is not to haveone dictate what happens,t's all a balance, and that's what i tink that we have to look for this coming year. we have not had that balance, because we had one arm saying we will do nothing but go after obama, and that's not the way we get things one. >> you know what they are saying. you run the democrats. democra have not p together a budget in a year, and the republins in the house are doing that, and th are gettin things done, andhat's the argument they have made.
are they wrong? >> david, you knowang been around wasngton a long time, how the senate works, and the seate rks on consensus, and we have t be able to get that because the republicans -- i repeat for the third time, i want to make sure everybody understas this, obstruionism on steroids. >> no, i wrote that down. that's been the problem. i hope with what happened the last week in the last week of congress, republicans learned they cannot be guided by the tea party, because the tea par is putting them over the cliff. you want to talk about pollig? a rent poll shows american people favored mocrats in congress 42% to 22% to republicans. there are alkinds of polls. the point is they don't matter. we're in a new year o this coness, and what i wanto do is to work toet things done to rebuild this economy. >> we tal aut theresident and his approach to congress, because ultimately you can talk
about buildi consensus and it requires leadership on the part of both parties to actually achieve results. this caught my eye in usa "today." obama has given u on compromis not giving up on moderation underlton who ran oba's trsition team after the 2008 election, and hs just giving up on the house and senate. you sound about the same. you have given up on the prospe of rea cpromise this year? i think i said clearly today that i think that we need to work together. there are things we need to get done this year to cntinue the momentum the economy has. does e economy have engh momentum of course not. but for 22 mont we have built on private sector jobs and we ha so much more that needs to be done, so i look a the glass as being half fl and not half empty, and i hope the
republicans have lened that they cannot be led over the cliff by thextremism -- >> what does the president say to the congress and country that breaks the log jam? what can he say that get repuicans ofthe sidelines, as you would put it, to start negotiating with democrats? >> the president,o his credit, for 2 1/2 years, bent over backrds to devel bipartisansh. he had people down at the white hse. republicans down at the white house. he came to capitol hill. nobody can eerriticize the president for rching out to republicans, because he has done that. since last september, we have been more directed in saying we have to do things without the republicans and that's what we have done, and that'shat we did with his jobs ll. we kept bringing votes forward to move the american economy forward. look at one of the things we did that was so important, and we
thought it was wrong to lay off teachers and firefighters and police officers aoss the country, so we thought we would have the whole american populists work together, andwe said the millionaires, people that make more than $1 million a year, suld not thethey conibute to keep t cops and the firighters and the teachers on the j? so what we wanted to do, and this is the legislation, we wanted to have millionaires, and that is people that makeore than $1 million a year, they would pay one-halof 1% tax, and evy republican voted agait that. >> you were talking about democrats are dug in on the idea that rich pay more in taxes, and repubcans feel opposite, and asked you what can the president do to break the log jam, and your answers hefully they will do better and there's
nothing herthat would help people see change in washington. you are blaming the tea party, and the republicans are blaming the president for no reaching out in a real way and trying to compro, and is there anything that n be done to really chang the dymic? >> i don't think anybody c question -- or tey shouldn't questn our reaching out to the republins. we have done everything we could toork with them. we will continue to do that in spite of the obstructionism. we have been able to acmplish aot of good things during the last congress, even somebody as conservative as hornstein said they were productive. in spite of theepublicans we got a lotof things done,we had theost productive congress in the history of congress. all isk is for the republicans to understand what legislation is allabout. it's the compromise a building of consensus
>> the way washington works is what pple are focused on and even the recessed appointment to hea the consumer protection bureau, this hasbe a big issue on the camaign trail because your inaproforma session, and not a real session, and this is what governor rney is saying last night. >> he is taking his friends and putting them in positions of power. he doesn't want t work with both parties. he wants to jam through whatever he wants do. >> this is washington at work as far as the republicans are concerned. >> one othe things the president has donehat has been so popular is appointing a man, not a single republican has called for his qulifications. we did what a lot of presidents
have done in the ast, and when i say we i mean the white house, what he is doing is criticizing teddy roosevelt that recessed peopl and ronald reagan recessed to appoint people. listen, the point is this, the president is entitled by our constituti to appoint people. the republicans have made it so that the national labor relations board, they didn't want ito even work and he had to do recess appointments there. it was a good move by the president. i am confent thathe president's recess appointments will be upheld in the courts. without any question, i think that will be the case. >> let me ask you -- >> if i could say, the recess appointment is something that i camup with during the bush years, but the reason bush didn't do recess appointmen
during the time we had the recess is because i worked with him, and we gave president bush hundreds d hundreds of pple. he didn't have to worry about recess appointments becausee were workin with him, and i believe the man that i believe now the president has the ght to make appointment. >> you talk about the economy and income equality, and iwant to pay a clip and ask how the president will deal with it. >> when the truth of the matter is the rich are getting rich and the poor areettingoorer and i used to say the middle class will disappear, andhe middle class has disappeared. today as i sit here, there is a highway into poverty. there is not even aidewalk anymore to get out. >> specifically, state of t union coming up, what is the nequality agen for democrats as we get into this new year? >> to create jobs. to have the richest of the rich contribute to the prongs we have
inhe country. i couldn't have said it better hashe did. i think she is absolutely right. the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer and the middle class iseing squeezed almost to death. d you think romn ishe nominee? i watched the battles during the primary, and there's a lot going on. the republicans are beating up on each othe i wilstay out o the presidential republican primary. >> do you think he has a core? >> i don't kw w a re means. >> you said he is a man that doesn'tnow who hi >> lien, the republicans have said a lot of things, good and bad about romney. i think that i don't need to interject myself into e republican primary. >> what about the democrats this fall in the senate? you have 23 democratic seat and only ten republican seats a up, and nelson just announced he is retiring.
do you think losing control of the senate to the republicans is a possibility? >> we are doing extremely well. people acrosshe country know what democra standfor. we stand for tak care of the middle class and rebuilding america. we don't believe you should be stripping good things from the senior citins of this country in anffort to do good things for the richest o the rich. we believe health care should not be rationed, and people know that. we're going tdo just fine come november. >> you are not vulnerable to losing the senate in your judgment? >> i think we're looking pret good. >> what about in nebraska? ould you like to see former senator, bob kerry, to run? >> who wouldn't? he iseroic man, and a wondeul human being. we have a lot of good democratic
prospects. we havemaachusetts, and north carolina, and arizona, and we hae nevada, and we're doing jut fine with prospects. kerry would certainly add to that. >> will leave it there. thank you. coming up, more on the fight for south carolina and the republican primary race. replicans there picked the party's ninee in every cycle since 1980, and after romney picks up in iowa and new hampshire, his rivals,s you heard this morning,re turning up the heat by attacking his claim on jobs, a a we will have lindsay graham and tim scott oming up next on "meet the press."
senator graham, this is the cor of the weekly standard, and it tells the story if you look at it. can the romney jug nunt be derailed. you said if the election were held tomorrow, you are saying it would be newt gingrich who would win south carolina. who do you think will win now? >> i think the deates, i think, will be outcome determinative. and if for some reason he is not derailed here and mitt romney wins south carolina, i think it should be over. there would be que a testament to his ability as a candidate d campaign, and i hope the party would rally around him if he did win south carolina. >> and if they e going to drive the out come, the social consub-tive leaders meet in texas, and they saythe guy is rick santorum. but you heard speaker ngrich,
who said i don't think he's going anywhere. at is the impact of their vote over the weekend? >> well the evangelical vote will be hurnlg, and a strong turnout, but you have to consider you have three peop gog after the evangelical vote strongly. it's hard to find a single candidate that rallies all of the chriian voters in south carolina, and therefore that splintered approach will probably have a major impact on saturday. >> what is driving the vote? you go to your district, and you are talking to people in the state, and what is really going to drive the vote in souh carolina? >>well, our unemployment rat in south carolina is st 10%, so thehing that i think voters are heading into, whether you are evangelical or weathhether are a liberal or libertarian, yoare looking who helped to create js in this economy.
>> how do you answer that as well? 's the economy, yes, and we heard a lot about the attacks and you heard it again this morning frpeak gingrich on governor romney and his time at bain cap. >> i think what drives the uncertainty and the undecided voe right now is who can beat obama? that's what i am focused on. the idea that you make a claim that i have been a great businessman and created 100,000 jobs, and i think it's fair to say prove that claim. but if the attack against overnor romney is private equity is bad for the economy, i think that's misplaced. without them a lot of these companies would not get traditional financial backing they would sell, but the idea of proving your claim that you created 100,000 jobs is a legitimateinquiry, and attacking capitalism is not. the numbeone thing that i am looking at is who can stand up to barack obama and make him a
one-term president. >> you talk about whether it helps the other side. tim scott, y on fox news this wk said this about the attacks on romney and bai i will play it for you. >> e thing whout any qustion that is true today and that is that the winner of t 28-minute commeral is preside barack obama. starting and feeding io the cultural war isbsolutely unequivocly wrong for us as a nation and bad for the conseative movemt. >> and yet that film had errors in it a shod not be taken down,and he said the record at bain was a ruthless as wall street. do you think that's fair? >> well, i think that's probably incoistent with reality, and there's no question that the story line tha wll play out in theall if romney isur nominee, the will be manyads run by the president talking about what republicans said about our own nominee.
i think that's just bad for the country, because i think the couny absolutely needs a new president. >> dyou think romney, if he's e nominee, has been hurt by this sufficiently that they are giving the president a very potent issue to use against him as the nominee? >> well, they are certainly bung into a liberal story line without a question. i hope whoeverur nominee ends up being, this process of choosing the nominee will help him to be a tougher candidate and give him a tougher opportunity now so the ro gets easier later. >> when are you going to endorse you have made up yur mind who you are going to endorse? >> we had a forum yesterday, david, where i had an opportuni to listeno five ry strong candidates, and i walked away with a little more clarity. i am going through the process of elimination. this is a very difficult choice, because each candidate really represents something that i really like, and i believe the country needs, but the queion that senator graham was talkg
about is who matches my values and who can win, and that's the guy we will suppt. >> do you think ybody but romneyas a realistic shot at beatinthe president? >> i think we'll know t answer saturday. if romney wins south carolina, i think the game is er. this is the last stand for many candidates. you will see the candidates coalescing around togher around one option, and that's taking this race to florida with some momentum. >> and congressmanscott, you a a tea party candidate in your state, and harry reid just talked about that, andthis columsays most people expected the tea party to shape the20 election. yet the one credible contender it has produced embodies everything the tea party despis
despises. in an age of populist discontent, they will battle over the middle ground. it will be interesting to see what happens to all the passion beneath them. senator graha you never thought the tea party as a political movement could surve? >> well, what i said is that the tea party is associated with changing an out-of-ctrol government. most americans associate themselves that we're too far in debt andut of touch. tim is the rising star in the republican party, and he getsas much chamber of commerce support as the tea party. people other than mitt romney can beat barack obama. he has been a very unproductive preside, and the question for the country is do you expect your li t change if you give back obama a second term to keep doing the same things he has done in the first term? ts is our election to lose. the only way we will lose it, if
we go too long in terms of t primary and the attacks g too far. we haveot done that yet. bush said reagans politics were voodoo, and they ended up nning. we will pick the most electable conservative, and mitt romney is a good man the tea party people should look at closely to vote for, because i think he can beat barack obama. i think that's all of or goals. >> you are not endorsing him, or are yourepared to do that? >> i don't know who i willote for, because i know in south carolina, we pick presidents here and this is the best chance i have seen in years for the republican party to revive itself, and to prove wean lead and end the barack obama administration. >> is romneynyour view a tea party candidate?
>> i would say that we have five strong candates ruing for presidentn the republican nomination process right no i would pbably s he is the least of the candidates running for president right now tt would be considered a tea party candidate. the question is can he win? any republican nominee is better than the president we currently have. >> we will leave it there. thank you very much, we will be watching the vote. before we go, stay with nbc and msnbc all week. [ jennifer garner ] there's a lot of beautiful makeup out there. but one is so clever that your skin looks better even after you take it off. neutrogena® healthy skin liquid makeup. 98% saw improved skin. does your makeup do that? neutrogena® cosmetics. [ woman ] i was ready for my trip, but my smile wasn't. [ female announcer ] new crest 3d white intensive professional effects whitestrips.
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